Understanding Liability in a New Mexico Self-Driving Car Accident

by | Nov 13, 2022 | Car Accidents | 0 comments

Autonomous cars are no longer a cartoon prediction of the future. Self-driving motor vehicles are quickly becoming a glimpse into what the next couple of years has in store for the world of commercial vehicles and trucks. Considered an economical alternative to regular driving, autonomous cars may change how our current world works. 

However, as with anything new, the perks of self-driving cars come with a plethora of initial challenges, such as liability in the case of an accident. If the vehicle is technically driving itself, who is at fault for any damages? There are multiple factors to consider, such as the level of autonomy. In most cases, the fault can be pinned on the driver of the car or even the manufacturer or software engineer. Either way, if you are injured in an accident involving a self-driving car, reach out to a personal injury lawyer, like those at Dominguez Law, as soon as possible so they can begin building your case. 

Who Is Liable in a Self-Driving Car Accident? 

New Mexico recently enacted N.M. Code R. Section, allowing self-driving motor vehicles to operate on roads. Many major vehicle manufacturers have begun to offer self-driving options, including Tesla, Honda, Mazda, and Cadillac. There are different levels of autonomy that allow the driver to choose how involved they want to be in the driving experience. Most cars only offer the lower levels, which still involve active participation from the person operating the vehicle. When you are in an accident due to the negligence of a self-driving motor vehicle owner, the following may be considered liable:

The Driver

Currently, all self-driving vehicles are still required to have someone physically present and behind the wheel at all times. If you are injured in an accident, it is likely the driver is liable for any damages sustained. Though the car is autonomous, the driver of the vehicle is still required to be alert and responsive to the ebb and flow of traffic. If they are negligent to the responsibilities of the road, they may be found at fault for any injuries. 

The Manufacturer 

Sometimes cars break down, and this includes the self-driving features. If the other driver is not found to have exhibited negligent behaviors while behind the wheel, the manufacturer of the motor vehicle may be at fault. 

When purchasing an autonomous vehicle, there is a certain expectation of safety and quality. If the manufacturer is unable to meet those standards or a certain part of the vehicle unexpectedly stops working, your personal injury lawyer can help you seek appropriate compensation. 

How a New Mexico Personal Injury Lawyer Can Establish Liability

When you are injured due to another driver’s negligence, it is vital you are able to focus on your recovery. A dedicated personal injury attorney will work behind the scenes while you rest to collect the following time-sensitive evidence:

  • Witness accounts
  • Traffic camera footage
  • Medical reports
  • Motor vehicle diagnostics 

No matter who is at fault, you deserve proper compensation for your injuries. 

Contact a New Mexico Car Crash Attorney Today

Injuries due to someone else’s negligence can result in lost wages, piles of medical bills, and tacked-on stress and anxiety. Dominguez Law and our team of compassionate and aggressive personal injury attorneys are here to help alleviate some of that pressure. We have fought for a variety of car accident clients and enabled them to get the highest levels of compensation for their claims. We also speak Spanish so that we can support and assist more clients.

To begin the process of receiving the damages you deserve, contact us today for a free consultation at (505) 850-5854 or use our online contact form.